Headline bands for O’Fallon’s Heritage & Freedom Fest were announced at the March 28 O’Fallon City Council meeting.
This year’s starring performers are: Rock n’ roll legends Pat Benatar and Neil Giraldo, on tour celebrating their 40th anniversary, with opening act Gabby Barrett on Thursday, July 4, and country music star Walker Hayes with opening acts Noah Guthrie and Missouri-native Filmore on Wednesday, July 3. The 2019 Heritage & Freedom Fest will be held at the Ozzie Smith Sports Complex, 900 T. R. Hughes Boulevard, O’Fallon, Missouri, 63366.
“Once again, the O’Fallon City Council and I are proud to bring nationally-known entertainers to the Main Stage for our community to see and hear live at our City’s biggest, most patriotic party of the year, the Heritage & Freedom Fest,” said O’Fallon’s Mayor, Bill Hennessy. “The concerts are free, the bands are outstanding, and we’ll end each show with spectacular fireworks displays.
O’Fallon’s Heritage & Freedom Fest kicks off on Tuesday, July 2, featuring a new carnival, a colorful midway, family-friendly sideshows and other activities from 4–10 p.m. (There will be no fireworks or Main Stage music on Tuesday.) Carnival rides, the midway and festival food and merchandise vendors will be open for business throughout the festival over all three festival dates, July 2-4.
On Wednesday, July 3 (4-11 p.m.) and Thursday, July 4 (noon to 10 p.m.), the festival will get into full party mode with free concerts, fireworks, and free kids’ and family-friendly activities. On Independence Day at 9:30 a.m., O’Fallon’s Heritage & Freedom Fest Parade, which is one of the biggest in the area, will step off from Main and Third streets and proceed north to Tom Ginnever Avenue, continue east on Tom Ginnever and end at T.R. Hughes Boulevard near the festival entrance.
Country Music Night, July 3
Country music’s Walker Hayes and Filmore will perform their chart-topping hits as they headline the Festival’s popular country night on July 3rd.
Monument Records recording artist, Walker Hayes, is a singer/songwriter originally from Mobile, Ala. Hayes’ current single “90’s Country” made its debut on Good Morning America and is available for purchase or download everywhere. The single, which references 22 90’s country songs, was written by Hayes, Shane McAnally and LYRX and co-produced by David Garcia, McAnally and Hayes.
In December 2017, Hayes released his debut album boom, which he co- produced with Grammy-Award winning producer and songwriter, McAnally. The 10-track album includes the RIAA certified Platinum hit, “You Broke Up With Me” as well as fan favorites “Halloween” and “Beautiful. Tracks from the album were nominated for Radio Disney Country Favorite Song (“You Broke Up With Me”), CMT Breakthrough Music Video of the Year (“You Broke Up With Me”) and AIMP Song of the Year (“Craig”). Hayes is currently headlining his Dream On It Tour. Last year, he headlined his first every Good As Gold Tour and has previously toured with Kelsea Ballerina, Thomas Rhett, Dan + Shay, Old Dominion and more.
Filmore is an anything-but-typical country singer/songwriter. The Missouri-native, who now calls Nashville home, tallies more than 50 million on-demand streams to date and has been featured by Spotify, The New York Times, SiriusXM’s “The Highway,” The Bobby Bones Show, Apple Music, CMT, and Pandora.
In addition to Spotify featuring Filmore on noteworthy playlists such as “New Music Friday” and “Wild Country,” etc., he was the first unsigned artist to become the face of the coveted “Hot Country” playlist, and has had multiple tracks reach the US Top 50 Viral Chart.
Sacrifice only begins to describe the man, who is unequivocally all-in to expand his reach worldwide. He has honed his electric and engaging live show by touring alongside Sam Hunt, Russell Dickerson, Brett Young, Carrie Underwood, Jon Pardi, Michael Ray, Chase Rice, and Dan + Shay among others, on the way to headlining sold-out clubs across the country. Recent festival highlights include Watershed, CMA Fest, Stagecoach, Country Thunder USA, SXSW, Faster Horses, Buckle and Boots (UK), The Rooftop at Pier 17 in NYC, and you can look for him on tour with Walker Hayes from January through May of 2019.
“Heart’s Having a Hard Time,” the latest release from Filmore, was featured by The New York Times on “The Playlist.” In less than a month since its December 14, 2018 release, the song has already amassed millions of on-demand streams.
Singer/songwriter Noah Guthrie built a name for himself when, at the age of 15, he began recording covers of popular songs on YouTube. He began touring at 16, performing over 200 shows by the age of 18. All the while, Noah continued writing his own music, and in 2013, Noah released his first original album, Among the Wildest Things.
As Noah continued touring, he was spotted by casting directors for the television show, Glee, who cast Noah as the character, Roderick Meeks, on the final season of the show. While spending eight months in Los Angeles filming Glee, Noah continued to write new music. As soon as he returned home to South Carolina, Noah began recording with his brother and friends, resulting in his second album, The Valley, which highlights the range of Noah’s vocal abilities with tender love songs as well as soaring ballads.
With his band, Good Trouble, Noah continues to tour and build his following with powerful and touching stage performances all over the world. Noah, and his band, were recently featured performers on Rock Boat XVIII.
Rock n’ Roll Night, July 4
On Fourth of July, rock the night away featuring powerhouse rock n’ roll legends Pat Benatar and Neil Giraldo and former American Idol contestant and up-and-coming singer Gabby Barrett.
Pat Benatar and Neil Giraldo
Pat Benatar and Neil Giraldo have been making music together for four decades.
Pat and Neil met each other in 1979 for the first time in a small rehearsal room at SIR Studios in New York City. The rest as they say “is history.”
Pat Benatar’s staggering vocals and take-no-prisoners attitude, along with Neil Giraldo’s trailblazing artistry as a guitarist, producer, and songwriter forged the undeniable chemistry and unique sound that created some of rocks most memorable hits including; “We Belong,” “Invincible,” “Love Is A Battlefield,” “Promises In The Dark,” and “We Live For Love.” Together they have created two multi-platinum, five platinum and three gold albums, as well as 19 Top 40 hits. They have sold over thirty million records worldwide and have won an unprecedented four consecutive Grammy awards.
In 1982, Benatar and Giraldo were married and have two grown daughters. In 2018, they joyfully became grandparents for the first time.
Their musical career has endured for forty years and this summer for their 40th Anniversary, the duo is embarking on a multi-city tour, undoubtedly thrilling their fans everywhere.
Gabby Barrett came into prominence when the 18 year old vocal powerhouse hit the national stage as a finalist on Season 16 of American Idol. Gabby is one of eight children from Munhall, PA (near Pittsburgh).
She began singing live in gospel choirs at the age of nine and, in 2014, she won Kean Quest Talent Search. Prior to Idol she performed over 100 shows and helped raise money for a host of regional charities including the Children’s Hospital in Pittsburgh and the Ronald McDonald House. She was even regarded as “A voice you must hear” by The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review.
During Idol, Gabby collaborated on performances with superstars Bebe Rexha, Carrie Underwood, Sugarland and Luke Bryan, and toured on the American Idol Live! 2018 tour.
Gabby just wrapped up a nationwide tour with Chris Lane on the “Laps Around The Sun Tour.” She has been writing and recording with award-winning producer Ross Copperman to release throughout 2019.